Climate justice is everybody’s business— Franciscans

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Bro. Angel Cortez (Contributed Photo)

MANILA, Sept. 5, 2015– No group can claim exclusive right to advance climate justice, a Franciscan brother said after the advocacy was labelled a “socialist” agenda.

Refuting claims that it is largely just a progressive plot against capitalism, Franciscan Brother Angel Ace Cortez responded, “It’s everybody’s business.”

He said climate justice advocacy is responsible involvement of any individual or group who cares for nature that faces mounting serious threats.

According to him, it is a call for commensurate reparation for the damages climate has sustained from humanity.

He also said climate justice can be served through reforestations, carbon emission cutdown, solid and non-solid wastes recycling, and other climate change mitigations.

“What we excessively take from nature today will haunt us in the future,” said Cortez, who is the convenor of the newly formed Ecological Justice Interfaith Movement.

Cortez added that Typhoon Yolanda, which wreaked havoc in Central Visayas in November 2013, might be a manifestation of climate change.

It’s not surprising that the Franciscans are involved today in the fight for climate, said Fr. Bernardine Leones, a senior Franciscan priest.

“St. Francis of Assisi is the Patron Saint of Ecology,” Leones said.

Mario Jose De Vega, a professor at the Universidad De Manila and outspoken advocate of Socialism said “climate justice advocacy is not a monopoly of socialists.”

“Even anti-socialists support it, De Vega said.

“It has become everybody’s concern. Even the corporations that emit the largest volume of carbon into the atmosphere cannot escape its negative impact,” he said.(Oliver Samson/CBCPNews)

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